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Reception and book signing to follow. 

Admission is free. Reservations for in-person attendance are full, but online viewing is available.


“An intellectual populist and a pioneer.”—The New Yorker 

At a time when LGBTQ+ people are under attack and queer stories are being censored, graphic novelist Alison Bechdel will discuss how graphic memoir offers a valuable way of expressing one’s life experiences, fostering empathy and advocacy. For future health professionals, her stories offer keen insight into the human condition and tools for supporting the people under their care. 

Bechdel has won numerous awards, including a MacArthur “Genius” Award in 2014 and a Tony for Best Musical in 2015 for the musical adaptation of her debut graphic memoir, Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic, which depicts her childhood experience with sexual and gender identity and her father’s suicide. In June, Fun Home was released as an audiobook featuring the voices of Jane Lynch, Carrie Brownstein, Roberta Colindrez, and Roxane Gay.  

Bechdel describes her second graphic memoir, Are You My Mother?, as an examination of “the self, subjectivity, desire, the nature of reality.” Most recently, the Inkpot Award winner has extended her study of self in relation to others by exploring the influence of fitness branding and aesthetics on body image and gender in The Secret to Superhuman Strength

This event is part of the Visualizing Medicine Lecture Series, which also includes a talk by Shirlene Obuobi and an exhibition featuring art by Obuobi and Bechdel at Norris Medical Library. 

Related Events: 
Visualizing Medicine: Humanizing Healthcare through Web Comics and Graphic Memoir 
Beginning Wednesday, November 1, 2023 
Norris Medical Library, Health Sciences Campus 
For more info, click HERE

Comics for Advocacy and Self-Reflection in Medicine: An Afternoon with Shirlene Obuobi 
Thursday, November 2, 2023, at 12 p.m. 
Mayer Auditorium, Health Sciences Campus 
For more info, click HERE

Presented by USC Visions and Voices. Organized by Pamela Schaff (Medical Education, Family Medicine, and Pediatrics), Renée A. Rau (Norris Medical Library), Annie M. Thompson (Norris Medical Library), Erika Wright (Medical Education and English), Sabrina Derrington (Pediatrics), and Ron Ben-Ari (Internal Medicine and Medical Education). Co-sponsored by Keck School of Medicine’s HEAL (Humanities, Ethics, Art, and Law) Program, the USC Libraries, and the CHLA Center for Bioethics.  

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